Inside Higher Ed
July 14th, 2014
Many adjuncts not only work for low pay, but do so without
employer-provided health insurance. So the American Federations of
Teachers’ announcement on Friday that it was partnering with the
Freelancers Union to offer adjuncts – even those who aren’t part of AFT –
access to benefits came as good news to many. The AFT is not paying for
benefits, but rather is offering adjuncts access to various plans that
might be difficult or more expensive to obtain individually.
Earlier this year, the Freelancers Union announced the launch of a
National Benefits Platform, through which independent workers can search
by ZIP code a “suite” of various benefits.
Offerings include health and dental insurance and retirement and term
life insurance. The new AFT partnership will offer adjuncts a special
web portal to access these and other programs and services offered by
both unions, starting this fall.
The Freelancers’ membership already includes about 3,000 educators,
most of whom are adjuncts. The union offers legal representation and
other services to its members -- about 250,000 nationwide. About 10
percent currently purchase their insurance directly from the union, in
New York State only. This fall, Freelancers will start offering members
ways to purchase insurance in 49 other states through various